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tv   Breaking the Set  RT  April 18, 2013 2:29am-3:00am EDT

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but judging by the huge impact of the explosion there you know on the surrounding area that although he was saying that it is that it is a small place a small town but it was a residential area right next to the plan to there was a he there was an apartment building there was a nursing home there and now we're getting reports that over one hundred people are being treated at one of the hospitals near near that town so this is a huge challenge for rescue teams at the moment because of the danger of chemical inhalation and also of the possibility of this for this other explosion because there is one of the. other another fertilizer tank is still intact in the fire is still ongoing at least four five firefighters who responded to initially responded to the fire are now unaccounted for they are reported missing what happened is.
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when a small fire allegedly broke out at around seven pm. they were there and those are those firefighters who are now reportedly unaccounted for but then the big explosion happened at around seven fifty pm local time and we see this confirmed in the footage that we're getting in cell phone footage that shows that there were two one smaller at the beginning and then there was the big explosion just to give you an idea of how how massive it was it was registered as a two point one magnitude earthquake so it was a massive explosion ripped through the plant and through the nearby area in this town of west in texas as far as the cause of the explosion we don't know anything for certain at the moment officials are saying that this is a tool or a we. whether this was
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a safety play or or an or an accident. we don't know yet ok let's just give us elves an idea of what happened on that initial explosion we can now hear from one of the firefighters who was one of the first at the city i can tell you i was there i walked through the blast area i searched some houses earlier tonight massive just like iraq just like the murray building in oklahoma city same kind of exploded so you can imagine what kind of damage we're looking out there. i know that was at least seventy five to fifty fifty to seventy five houses damaged there's apartment complex that has about fifty units in it that was completely. just skeleton standing there's a nursing home in the area that one hundred thirty three people in the nursing home we've got them evacuated i don't know what their injuries are are there right now but all injuries have been removed from the scene and taken to local hospitals in
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the waco area we had numerous agencies helping us all the way from the dallas fort worth area mclennan county limestone feel bosky and all the surrounding areas so we've had a great turnout. to come out to help us get through this tragedy that we've had in this small community. was who had the real concerns about toxins emanating from this plant robert j. could some hiroshima piece in-situ says chemical contamination is a very real possibility. where fertilizer as we know is extremely combustible so it's been used in bombs and so it's manufacture is extremely delicate and can easily if handled wrong or if handled in safely can lead to explosions so we have to assume at this point that it is such a chemical explosion that happened there plant when you're handling chemicals like this there is a possibility that there can be chemical contamination that could that would need to be cleaned up in the aftermath of the explosion so they'll undoubtedly be
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extensive monitoring of the areas around the plant in order to make sure that whatever chemicals have been spread around can be cleaned up to reduce future toxicity to the residents with the kinds of winds that blow in such big intense fires there will be airborne distribution. so there's nothing that can be done while the event is happening what will be done is is assessment and cleanup in the aftermath currently people are being evacuated because of the dangers to for further explosions for fire to spread and also for spread around of some of the chemicals from the plant however those will almost certainly be deposited close to the plant and it will be possible to get in there make assessments and to clean up some of the area in the future so those are the primary dangers. well we're joined now by shown again short on the saudis correspondents who was there for a long time in the states and sources familiar with texas now we talked to earlier
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this is a rural area and it's never seen anything a disaster on this scale before but given the fact it is sort of farming area rural area presumably there are other chemical plants that are fertilizer plants and. presumably there are precautions in place for potential contamination well indeed and. first of all you have specific teams that are trained for hazardous material disposal rescue and evacuation and they're called hazmat teams and we know from the response that many hazmat teams from around the state were rushed to the scene immediately following the disaster probably because they were very well aware of this and. and the possibility of it being an airborne contaminants but then what you have to look at so with these teams in place you're going to see an evacuation response measured and appropriate one of the things that they'll look at is the type of weather that's in the area not just the big fires large fires of
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this nature they have their own microcosm of weather events they kind of create their own weather issues as it were but you know is it a windy time what direction is the wind blowing are they going to have to evacuate people that are down the wind from this disaster are they going the direction of evacuation are they going to have to move what people will they have to move people or which direction will they have to move people to in order to avoid this toxic gas cloud if this toxic gas cloud comes out there is going to be special measurements taken of the air and of the different levels around to see what height this gas cloud is so there's lots of procedures in place to handle something like this from happening now. small rural community when dealing with fertilizer. we also have in the united states was called osha and they have requirements by law
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that they have to have plans in place evacuation plans for the facility itself if something happens. the people at that facility are very well aware of the dangers of the toxic chemicals that they are working with the people in the towns surrounding it when it comes to a rural environment there's also grain elevator fires which can cause very deadly and large explosion as well with that's when the find dust of a grain elevator catches on fire and in that confined area causes a very devastating explosion as well so. the farming industry as it were whether it be chemicals from fertilizers or from grain elevators they're well aware that these potential risks are there and so the companies in the plants themselves there they know how to handle it from a very localized level and then from a statewide level as these hazmat teams come in they can assess the scene and then help manage things from the outside ok so it sounds pretty comprehensive and
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certainly from the footage we've seen the emergency response to what happened seems to be certainly. not lacking in resources and as you said they've drawn a lot of support from. now you from all around not just from you have the local response which they're the first firefighters on the scene but again if you look at these images you're seeing just see a never ending sea of emergency lights and all of these people from around the state have had to get there. and texas is a very large state so to have that type of response in such a short time speaks to the level of preparedness that they are. because no one is expecting an explosion like this and for there to be such a response so quickly is a good sign or let's just talk about the coaches and as we all know it's speculation and we don't know what caused this at this stage but a point of history the explosion did take place on the for the twentieth anniversary of the seas between the thirty's and that it's a religious group more than eighty people died during the fifteen day standoff do
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you think this is going to be an element to any investigation of course everything is going to be looked at mean you have the david koresh incident in waco very high profile in fact many people when they hear the name waco and this is in close proximity that's what they think of they think of the david koresh branch davidian complex going up in flames and so that will be an element i'm sure of the investigation but if you look at the climate in the united states immediately at this very moment we're coming off of the boston tragedy two explosions twelve seconds apart from each other at the boston marathon if you look at what else has happened this week we've had the rice in letters sent to obama and the two senators as well so right now there is a heightened level of attentiveness if you will in the country. so. while we can't say definitively i mean this could have very well been someone putting their cigarette in the wrong place when they shouldn't have the smoking but
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i think you're going to find an extra level of attention to detail that investigators are going to put considering the heightened level of tension in the united states right now ok well danny is now back with us i understand. can you hear us danny. yes i can enter thank you we've just been talking to shawn there about potential causes and he did stress the high level of tension in the united states in the moment what is the government said oh are we expected to hear from them shortly and what would we expect to hear from them. well i don't know what they're going to say but it would i'm pretty sure that they're going to be very cautious as far as numbers as far as any preliminary. so as far as causes what caused. this event this explosion as well because. many people's jobs and lives could be could be on the
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line here because of course of course there has to be an investigation first before before they say anything. and it's a big question whether anybody can be sued over this or what's going to happen in the future first of all this has to be investigated first and then we can we can we can talk about the cause of this but for what we see now there was a small fire apparently there was a smaller fire at the beginning and then at around seven pm local time and seven seven twenty i'm sorry local time and then at around seven fifty pm local fire local time the big the massive explosion ripped through the area. damaging actually it has flattened. a number of buildings local the local media are saying dozens dozens of buildings nearby there was
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a big apartment unit there with over one hundred people living in it there was a nursing home we know that over one hundred people are being treated at the local hospital at the moment again two people are confirmed dead. and for now actually those are who we still don't have an official sort of number from from from the government but people are saying just judging by the impact that this explosion had on the area there will likely be maybe many more fatalities many more casualties although as sean was saying this was a this is a small town but still this explosion happened very very close to the residential residential area. all right we can have a look now at some of the images that have been appearing on social media just to give people an idea of the scale of this blast they have been posting footage
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pretty much shortly after the incident and for the ensuring hours these images i think we can show them to you now. cho a huge plume of smoke emanating from the fertilizer plant shortly after the explosion is an explosion that geologist said had a two point one magnitude effectively on the richter scale so if that was an earthquake it would have measured two point one that gives you an idea of the size there's been a stream of ambulances and emergency services and firefighters at the scene since the initial explosion firefighters were there to cover or to tackle an initial fire we believe and then a secondary explosion a massive explosion which we have been seeing over the last few minutes occurred and that's what caused a huge amount of damage. many people in the town itself have been evacuated those
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injured have been airlifted to hospitals in waco and also in houston we are unsure at the moment about the exact number of deaths officially but unofficially local media were saying from the very beginning that it was more like seventy many people still trapped in their buildings this explosion didn't just affect the thirty lies the plant it affected many surrounding buildings which were literally flattened by this blast and included an old person's home where one hundred thirty three people were living so many emergency services on the crew were also trying to get to those people hospitals trying to treat people now with many injuries from burns to the effects of hellacious of toxins and there's now concern that a toxic cloud could blow from this plant into nearby areas and people in that area are being evacuated on that account and there's also concern there might be a potential for another explosion we do know that four or five firefighters.
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a missing we do not know any more than that as i said the official death toll is that two but that is generally. as we've heard from danny and our correspondent in the united states that generally because they wait to identify the victims before. stating an official number but there are a number of concerns about. why this is happened and we spoke earlier to world affairs analyst professors that he and. the blasts is a sign of a major lapse in the u.s. system of maintenance control. unfortunately for many groups coming go right on the heels of a recent to restore america in boston so it looks like you know sometimes these fortune comes pari and that's what's happening right now and it's revealing some of the weaknesses of we used to do and are distributed architecture and what can we
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expect about the consequences of what might follow now in terms of the people have been affected those that have been killed those whose health has been badly affected but you also hear now that people are suffering from the effects of inhalation of toxic fumes or from your view what do you believe that we can expect to see in the aftermath. well india in one nine hundred eighty four we had this grid is our stuff for hobart and i still remember initially it was thought to be a localized one it could be continued ended up you know killing nearly twenty thousand people and the effects of them were still out of those at that of those that try to be still with the people of central india in the water so i think you know we're living in a time when you know the environment and all these you know core concerns of the earth are being disregarded by very very greedy capitalist lobbies and the point is
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that the states are all being called upon to step in and save the societies and to play a protective rule and to regulate these industries better and i must say that you know what has happened texas you seem to matter because the larger issue of ordered economy we have rio lost in the mornings in terms of how to regulated manage. to streets and unfortunately this is repeating itself after the b.p. are in spill which proved clearly that regulators were unable to rein in some of these are in sharks so is this the same case now happening with chemicals and before the lasers and and other other sectors in texas you have to wait and see but i think i think we are going to security lapse auditor failure of regulation no matter what the outcome and the wording these both of them show how we can the state structures have been in these new and really concrete like the united states and the u.k. and elsewhere and the carlow i think the argument significance of these kind of tragedies would be for people to push for stronger regulation of these of these
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greedy corporations that are completely disregarding people's lives in the search for a shot the profits from your opinion and what you've experienced for taking your knowledge and by power potentially what could be danny. oh i hope i mean if it's omonia as they're saying and i'm not a scientist but i feel that it could go off into the air and spread further and further and they may have evacuated. you know second radius fukushima we saw that in japan again you know the nuclear industry was in. cahoots with the regulators and they got away with a lot of foot shark guards and. you know eastlake you know penny wise pound foolish as the saying goes a lot of these garbage bins dooley's you know try to cut corners in order to balance their sheets and to gain marginal profits but in the process there bees are
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so in the last of the society and to the global commons is tremendous so i would not like to speculate on what how far if you go and how soon it can be contained but certainly i think the the we need and we're going see you don't have to be in a war footing no could try and limit the damage to the actual epicenter not click it spread further and work of course to has the technology and the government emission interest farm but the bigger question is are the failure of the start as in the cause we need to prove these people are and to see how these things could have been prevented why they're not been prevented by do we keep having guns reduced if we want to do once in three months in this country and then it goes back to normal so these are some of the core public policy tools of illusion invite the students deeply didn't seem to do justice to its own people. and that was the view of world affairs analyst three of them. let's go back to. in the united states our correspondent there speculation has started about what has caused this and one view
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as we've heard from that analyst was that this is an example of of capital greed and perhaps lapses in safety and also management at a plant like this now of course we cannot say that we do not know whether that's the truth but is this an issue that has been a live issue in america recently is this something that people have been concerned about well speaking of a security breach or of course of course this has to be a breach of some kind it's when something goes wrong when something like this breaks out but before before blaming anybody there has to be an investigation into what happened so it is really too early to say exactly what happened and home to blame but. there had to be something had to go wrong for this to happen so this could have been this could could be a security breach we don't know that it has to be investigated first before we talk
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about the cause of what happened and not only has been a few hours now since this explosion but as it stands officially so you people have been killed but there are fears for the safety and lives of many of those at this stage. that's right and it is a huge challenge for rescue teams to actually get there and to rescue those people because of chemical inhalation because of the possibility of another explosion there so we know that at least for fighters who initially responded to the first fire that broke out around seven pm local time they are doubt unaccounted for their missing. because because then the big explosion happened at around seven fifty pm local time so it is a big challenge for rescue teams to go there because because of all the all these
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threats. ok gary well thank you for that we'll talk to you again shortly i would like to bring in a correspondent in the studio sean thomas at this stage. we've heard about the speculation what could have caused it but let's talk about what we know i at the moment. at the same many many emergency services we believe local media have suggested that dozens of people have been killed by this but one thing is the toxic fear because this stuff can go on as you've mentioned to me as an ammonia what can you tell me about that and what would be the state's response to the how could the emergency services trying to tackle that what would they be doing that right well as we know a fertilizer is a component in many bombs that terrorists try and use so it is volatile if used in a specific way in just its regular state it is not necessarily very dangerous but an
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hundred somalia is very toxic it's a pungent suffocating type gas as described by the c.d.c. in the united states so they are very worried worried about this and getting out and being a secondary or even tertiary disaster if you will if you have the fire the explosion being the first part of the disaster and then releasing this toxic cloud into the atmosphere we don't know what direction it will go how far it will go will it dissipate immediately so this is something that the response teams and the emergency management crews have to assess and then handle properly because if they don't get it right and put someone in the way of this cloud if this does end up getting out there then they could be putting more lives at risk so as i've said throughout the course of our coverage you have the disaster you have the response and then you have the continuing disaster which has to be managed as well and managed properly ok sean we'll leave it there for the moment thank you for your
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insight into what has happened in texas just to remind. a severe blast took place at the fertilizer plant. in texas in the town of west just north of waco two people confirmed dead but the death toll is expected to be much much higher with local media reporting that seventy people have died that was just after the explosion many houses and buildings around this area were flattened by this blast including an old person's home one hundred thirty three people were thought to be living there many emergency services are just tackling the blaze which you can see at the moment trying to help these people that are trapped. with regard to that blaze it's now understood that four or five firemen are unaccounted for they had turned up at this plant tackle a fire but then there was a huge secondary explosion that measured two point one on the richter scale and that's what's caused this devastation that you are looking at at the moment this is
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a developing story here in r.t. and of course we will bring you all the updates that we have and analysis as we get it over stay with news from the u.s. a malicious mail scare has gripped america after letters laced with poison were sent to president obama and see other officials the deadly packages were intercepted by authorities and a man has been arrested in mississippi in connection with the case fisher say the suspect is well known as a frequent letter writer to lawmakers several government offices across the u.s. have also been locked down over of a suspicious packages the scare comes just days after the deadly boston bombing and echoes the post nine eleven anthrax mailer tanks which killed several people authorities say video footage from boston is help pinpoint to potential suspects they have not been identified and no arrests have been made and while americans have given up some liberties in exchange for tighter security in the last decade
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they feel neither safe nor freya is artesian report now reports on. well what we know so far and what the f.b.i. and secret service has disclosed is that a letter addressed to president barack obama contained substance rice and that is considered a poisonous substance that according to preliminary tests the letter that was addressed to him. was opened intercepted on tuesday a. voice in this toxin some would argue that all this these increased levels of security and and encroaching on civil liberties which critics say the u.s. does has been a waste of money we should also remember that when u.s. president barack obama addressed the nation and finally called boston marathon bombings a terrorist attack he said he doesn't know who is behind the attacks and why they
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would they would execute such an attack by a suspect in the perpetrator will be brought to justice what that indicates is the fact that the united states at this point can't pinpoint an enemy it's not like how it was in the aftermath of the aftermath of the september eleventh attacks there is no osama bin laden anymore that u.s. officials point a finger at and between september eleventh and now the u.s. has waged two very long wars also participated in military interventions and many experts would argue has created many many enemies all over the world so now at this point the u.s. can't pinpoint its enemy they do not know if the person or people behind the boston marathon bombings is someone that is located domestically is someone that's working with all of foreign organization they do not know and i think that puts many would argue that that puts the united states at a major disadvantage. you're watching so you will be more news on the devastating
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blast in waco texas in the company. wealthy british style. is no time to. market why not come to. find out what's really happening to the global economy with mikes concert for a no holds barred look at the global financial headlines tune in to kaiser report on our. choose your language. of holy week with zero if they sell some of. the fumes the consensus can. choose to opinions that invigorating to.
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the book about international and world in the very heart of moscow. thank you.

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